The Airbus Perlan Mission II team operates with around 25 volunteers. But not everyone can take 6-8 weeks away from work and families. So we repeatedly say "Hail and Farewell" to inbound and outbound team members. The night of 5 September we welcomed Kristina Messner from Focused Image and bid adios to Bettina Nerb from Airbus. The next morning was to be a fly day. Osvaldo Ferraro arrived from Buenos Aires and presented CEO Ed Warnock with a model of the Perlan and the Egrett - beautiful work!
Aviation measurements can be confusing when different numbers are used to describe similar terms. In the following blog we will compare the useage of the term altitude - pressure and GPS, as well as the useage of the term airspeed - indicated and true.
In the non-wave season Airbus Perlan Mission II took the opportunity to prioritize desirable upgrades to our systems. 2019 was extremely productive for improvements and completely new add-ons. After the first wave flight of the year, Jim summed it up:
On August 28, 2019 Perlan 2 took to the skies over the Andes looking for Patagonia wave. This flight took extraordinary effort on the part of Airbus Perlan Mission II team. But we "got 'er done"!
It was a perfect day for a check flight and photo chase mission. Crystal blue skies, no clouds, and no winds - Argentina Patagonia at its finest. Perlan 2 leaped skyward with test pilots Jim Payne and Miguel Iturmendi behind the mighty Egrett with the Airbus photo chase helicopter tracking it all. Arne Vasenden was the tow pilot and Jamie Darcy was inside the copter behind the camera.
On August 20, 2019 Airbus Perlan Mission II soared in Patagonia skies for the first time this campaign. With the long delay on the container, the Perlan team was ready to launch Perlan 2 for a return to service flight. Jamie Darcy had his video crew and photo chase helicopter ready. The glider had all necessary systems checked for low level flight. There had been lots of team hours spent getting the glider ready. The Egrett was ready to go. As a special guest Einar Enevoldson's grand daughter was visiting and she was ready to see Perlan 2 fly. With everything ready, it was time for Jim and Miguel to soar!
The high altitude Perlan 2 glider is almost ready to soar over Patagonia! After several days of checking systems and installing upgrades it was time to put the wings on. Everyone was really excited to be this close to flying. The hangar of AeroClub Lago Argentino was filled with activity and anticipation.
Perlan El Calafate Meetings
Airbus Perlan Mission could not successfully operate from remote Patagonia without strong support from Argentina organizations. We met with representatives from many groups – governmental, volunteer, and informal. Perlan 2 has unique operating conditions and limitations. We wanted to reacquaint ourselves with our supporters and meet any new administrators.